Archive for the D&D 3.5 e Content Category

Why I Love DDO

Posted in D&D 3.5, D&D 3.5 e Content, Dungeons and Dragons, Gaming Culture, Product Review, Video Games with tags , on June 27, 2011 by boccobsblog

 The Dungeon Master. The narration helps me immerse myself in the game world. (This may seem like a small detail, but it adds a lot to my enjoyment of the game).

Repeatable Quests. I can replay any quest as many times as I like and still get XP and loot.

Variable Difficulty. Quests have five levels of difficulty to choose from: casual, normal, hard, elite, and epic. (Note you have to unlock the last three. If you beat hard, you unlock elite, etc.) This makes leveling easy and adds new life to old quests.

Hirelings. Are you a caster without a tank? No healer in the party? You can just spend a few coins and get a hireling of nearly any class/race combo.The hireling stays with you for the entire dungeon. (I pay one fifteen gold and hire a cleric and the two of us can easily complete dungeons on the hard setting)

Puzzles. For those that tire of hack and slash, DDO includes many challenging puzzles into some quests. (I tried some out this weekend and was greatly impressed)

It’s D20 system. DDO uses 3.5 mechanics (modified slightly for video game use of course). I like the familiarity and ease this brings. It also makes character creation a snap.

It’s Free. DDO is completely free to download and play. Granted there are options not available to the free account players (namely the Favored Soul class, and some races: drow, half orcs, and warforged). Also, free accounts can only have two characters. Wizards makes their money through the DDO Store, in which you can spend money to get points which can be used to buy several things (items, classes, races rare adventures, hirelings, etc).

DDO is certainly worth a try. I am enjoying it greatly.

Try DDO for free

DDO concept art from Wizards.com

Gaming Paper

Posted in D&D 3.5 e Content, D&D 4e Content, Pathfinder, Product Review with tags , on May 9, 2011 by boccobsblog

If you’re looking for a new way to map out your game, give Gaming Paper a try (at four dollars a roll it’s an inexpensive test run).

What is Gaming Paper? Well according to their website:

Gaming Paper is the latest innovation in roleplaying and miniatures accessories and is a low-cost alternative to expensive battlemaps and tile sets. It’s an inexpensive, reusable and disposable product for gamers.

Gaming Paper is sold in convenient rolls that are 30 inches wide and 12’ long, for 30 square feet of playing surface. At only $4/roll, it is a fraction of the cost of other gaming mats on the market. Not only is it usable for miniatures games, but it is also ideal for roleplaying games. Anyone can use pens, markers, or other simple writing implements to create detailed terrain for campaigns or miniatures battles.

While I don’t use Gaming paper for every game, I do like it for situations when I don’t want to lug a mess of Dungeons Tiles or when I don’t want to halt the game while I draw a scene on a reusable battlemat. Gaming Paper allows you to draw elaborate maps using markers, pencils, pen, paint, (basically any art supply you enjoy using). You can get Gaming Paper  with either a square grid or hexes.

I highly recommend Gaming Paper, give it a chance and see if you enjoy it as much as I do.

Gamingpaper.com

Gamemastery Item Cards

Posted in D&D 3.5 e Content, D&D 4e Content, Pathfinder, Product Review with tags , , on April 25, 2011 by boccobsblog

images from Paizo.com

We’ve had a few posts talking about using props in your game. Some people have commented that they like the idea of props, but lack the time to find or make them. That got me thinking; Paizo offers a line of item cards that each depicts (in full color) an item either mundane or magical which could be used as a sort of meta prop.

Along with magic items, they offer two sets of mundane gear. This could be useful for those “ok who has the rope” scenario, or the similar “Oh I wouldn’t have been carrying the ancient artifact of doom on me, I left that in the inn”.

The cards (54 to a pack) have artwork by some the industries best artists, and the back of each card is left blank so the DM or player can write notes about the item, along with a detailed description of the item. The cards are not random, the contents of each deck (along with several previews) can be found at Paizo’s website.  At ten dollars a pack they are relatively inexpensive and offer a nice visual effect to enhance your game.

Check them out, and if you have a cool use for the cards, let us know.

Example of actual cards from “Elements of Power” deck (images from Paizo.com)

Goodbye Minis, Hello Tokens

Posted in D&D 3.5 e Content, D&D 4e Content, Product Review with tags , , , , , , , , , , , , , , on February 1, 2011 by boccobsblog

Wizard’s has stopped production on their miniatures line. To help fill this gap, they have begun producing more 2D tokens.

We ran an article several months ago showing how you could easily make these tokens at home, but several players have expressed that they haven’t the time to make their own so, that said, here is a list of Wizard’s products that contain good D&D tokens.

Dungeons and Dragons Adventure Game (2000)

This was a 3.0 edition basic game for people new to the hobby. It contains several sheets of one-sided, gray-scale tokens. Some of the tokens are of strange sizes because the sizing was different in 3.0 (large tall, large long, etc.), but this only affects a few tokens. This set is getting hard to find, but can still be bought on Amazon or E-bay for about 5 dollars. While not flimsy, these tokens are made out of much thinner material than the 4e tokens, but they are your cheapest option.

D&D Role-Playing Game Starter Set (2008)

This is essentially the fourth edition equivalent of the above-mentioned product. It came with a few sheets of dungeon tiles and several sheets of two-sided, full color tokens made out of the same material as Dungeon Tiles. The down side to this product is that it didn’t remain in production for very long and prices online are expensive with new sets selling for 50 dollars on Amazon.

The Red Box (2010)

The “Red Box” contains two sheets of token similar (but not exactly the same) as those contained in the fourth ed. Starter set from 2008. The Red Box sells for about twenty dollars and can be found online, Wal-Mart, and Target (although hopefully you’ll support your local game store if you have one)

Dungeon Master’s Kit (2010)

This box set contains another 3 sheets of die-cut tokens made from the Dungeon Tile material. Two sheets contain monsters and one sheet is PC’s of various races and classes. At forty dollars, this is the most expensive option, because the tokens are just a small part of the product.

Monster Vault (2010)

This 4e product is a treasure trove of monster tokens containing 10 full sheets of iconic D&D monsters. Again, these tokens are die-cut and made from the same material as Dungeon Tiles. At thirty dollars, it is one of the pricier options, but it is filled with some beautiful tokens of varying sizes.

Are you being cheated out of your critical hits?

Posted in D&D 3.5 e Content, D&D 4e Content, Gaming News, Product Review with tags , , , , , , , , , , , , , , on August 16, 2010 by boccobsblog

That’s what the people at Game Science claim. Their founder, Louis Zocchi, says that because modern dice companies roll their dice in rock tumblers and use sub-standard plastics to make their dice, that they are not as statistically accurate as his dice are.

If you would like to hear his entire story (warning, it is a bit of a rant that goes on for 20 minutes) you can view Zocchi’s videos here.

I tested several of the dice I purchased this year at Gen Con and I have to admit, Zocchi’s claims appear to be true (as “proved” by my very non-scientific test). I tested dice in groups of three to reduce the amount of time I spent rolling dice.

Results: Out of 150 rolls (tested 3 times), the Game Science dice rolled 15 20’s, while his competitors (three other large dice companies) only yielded 8 20’s.

I have conducted other similar tests for the unbelieving  gamers in my groups and come up with similar results.  Granted that a much larger data set would be needed to come to any firm decision, but the dice seem to yield more 20’s.

Has anyone else out there done any testing of their own? If so tell us about it.

-Andy

Highlights of Gen Con Indy 2010

Posted in D&D 3.5 e Content, D&D 4e Content, Gaming News, Uncategorized with tags , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , on August 11, 2010 by boccobsblog

Well, Gen Con Indy is over. As always, it was an amazing experience. Where else in the world can you see 28,000 gamers in one place? Where else can you have a deep conversation about kobold battle tactics with a 45-year-old man in a homemade Pikachu costume and have no one judge you? The rest of the world could learn a lot about diversity and tolerance at Gen Con. 

Here are some of the highlights: 

  

  

Costumes 

The attendants of this year’s Gen Con did not disappoint. There were some amazing costumes and everyone I saw was very patient, allowing themselves to be photographed again and again. 

Free Demos 

There were more games at GC than you could ever hope to try in four days. We tried some great new games and we will be sure to give each of them a full review in the weeks to come. 

The Vendors 

You have to admire people who are willing to spend four days dressed as a luchador, or a pirate, or wear a chicken on their head in hopes of moving their product. 

Felicia Day and Wil Wheaton 

This was the only part of the con that was a bit sour for me. I had hoped to meet the cast of The Guild, but the line was very long, so I walked up to the rope and took a few pictures. Shortly after I started snapping shots, security approached me and asked that I, “please put my pants back on and step away from the crew”. Well as you can imagine I was outraged, so I pulled my boffer sword and started to kick ass all the while screaming that Wil Wheaton had stolen my prized Degu. Any who…things got a bit intense and I was tazed several times and asked to leave. I didn’t let it ruin my day.

 Wizards of the Coast Displays

WotC had some amazing displays outside the Sagamon Ballroom, where they unveiled both the 4th edition incarnation of Darksun and the Castle Ravenloft Board game. There was a huge 3D red dragon representation of the Essential D&D Starter set that drop on September 7th. Also, there was a life-sized (can there be a life-sized version of a make-believe creature?) Beholder. It stood well over 12 feet tall. It was awesome. 

 The World of Darkness Lounge 

White Wolf had an excellent longue set up in the center of the con. The lounge, fully staffed by vampires, offered a bar, live music and an opulent seating area decorated with gothic-style furniture. 

All in all it was a great con. There is much more to say and I could go on forever posting pictures, but then I’d wouldn’t get any gaming done. If you attended the con I hope you had as good a time as I did, and if you didn’t get a chance to go, I hope to see you there next year. Enjoy these pictures. 

-Andy 

This beholder was life-sized and ate four of my group

 

 

Wil Wheaton

 

His breath smelled like dead gnomes and broken dreams

 

"I wish I had taken that civil service test..."

 

Felicia Day.

Buy my game or I'll body slam you!

Tired of the base classes? Here’s 34 other options

Posted in D&D 3.5 e Content, D&D 3.5e DM Content with tags , , , , , , , , , on August 6, 2010 by boccobsblog

Are you ready for a new challenge? Are you ready to step away from the base classes in the Player’s Handbook? Well many gamers don’t realize that there are several 20-level classes available to 3.5 players. The following is a list of 34, 20-level classes from the D&D 3.5 canon listed by the book they are found in.

Complete Adventurer

Ninja- stealthy assassin with ki powers

Scout- focuses on stealth and movement

Spellthief- a mage/thief that steals spells from other casters

Complete Arcane

Warlock- dark caster with unlimited eldritch blasts

Warmage- armored spellcaster

Wu Jen- elemental caster with unique spells

Complete Divine

Favored Soul- spontaneous divine caster (think divine sorcerer)

Shugenja- elemental divine caster

Spirit Shaman- spiritual nature healer

Complete Psionic

Ardent- versatile manifester

Divine Mind- divine manifester

Lurk- psionic assassin

Complete Warrior

Hexblade- blends curses and swordplay

Samurai- honor bound warrior

Swashbuckler- fighter that focuses on speed and skill

Dragon Magic

Dragonfire Adept- Draconic caster with breath weapon, similar to Dragon Shaman

Dungeonscape

Factoum- a true jack of all trades

Heroes of Horror

Archivist-erudite divine caster that exploits monsters through knowledge

Dread Necromancer-master of undeath on the road to lichdom

Magic of Incarnum

Incarnate- caster that embodies his alignment

Soulborn- blends incarnum and martial combat

Totemist- calls on the souls of nature

Miniatures Handbook

Healer- a specialist in curative magic

Marshal- a born leader and commander

Player’s Handbook II

Beguiler-master of lies and deception

Duskblade-fighter mage class without multiclassing

Dragon Shaman-dragon worshiper with a breath weapon

Knight- mounted warrior

Tome of Battle- The Book of Nine Swords

Crusader- holy warriors

Swordsage-blade wizards

Warblade-master of martial combat

Tome of Magic

Binder- summons powerful beings and bargains with them for power

Shadowcaster-masters of the power of darkness

Truenamer- uses the power of Truespeak

While Wizard’s may no longer be publishing books for the 3.5 edition, there is enough existing content out there to keep us gaming for several hundred lifetimes. (Classes from the Player’s Handbook and Expanded Psionics Handbook were not listed.)

Did I forgot any canonical 20-level classes? If so, post them in the comments section.